Another Semester, Another Round of Glory

Yes, it’s Beginning Color Drawing time again… Once again it’s been a great start to the semester. I feel pretty astounded at the talent of my Beginning Color students; even though they’ve all taken Drawing 1, and some have had other studio courses as well, they’re all making big strides. It’s fantastic work. Take a look:

Andrew Vincent “Grid #1” Chalk Pastel, 24 by 18 inches, 2011.

Melissa Hoefer “Grid #2 Colored Pencil, 18 by 18 inches, 2011.

Emily Armstrong “Two Colored Pencil Object Group Studies” Colored Pencil, 24 by 18 inches, 2011.

Lauren Roberts “Grid #1” Chalk Pastel, 18 by 24 inches, 2011.

Mitchell Baggett “Colored Pencil Object Group Study” Colored Pencil, 12 by 18 inches, 2011.

I know I’ll be posting more work from this group…

Experiences, Not Products

There’s a great piece up on the Guardian UK website showing a film of famed painter Sean Scully talking about working, being a father, and other topics. Though I’m not a huge fan of his work, I love what he says here:

“You’re trying to, in a sense, imitate God because you’re trying to be creative. And I can never make anything better than Oisin (his son). That’s my greatest creation.”

and here:

“I’m not sure that I have a destination in mind. I’m on a journey. I don’t expect to arrive.”

and here:

“If you’re plotting art, and trying to make something to get something, you’re not in a state of creative innocence. You’re not making art. You’re doing something else.”

This last bit is fantastic. I find it quirky for an artist like Scully – who has exhibited such consistency and clearly defined formatting for decades – to make that statement. But it is really something I believe in. I tell my students constantly: I couldn’t care less about products – I want experiences. I think that’s part of what Scully is saying there.

I don’t want my students to merely execute skills or master techniques; I want them to live out the sense of being that’s wrapped up in obtaining those skills or using those techniques. Making artwork is physical philosophy… it’s a musing on what it means to be miraculously conscious, purposefully aware, intuitively engaged and intellectually stimulated by a range of actions and tremendously important conditions of the human body/mind.

Above: Sketchbook drawing from 2006… it keeps coming back to me. Some day it’ll resolve into an image.

I saw the Scully story via Two Coats of Paint. Check out that blog.

Installing at Gordon

Today I arrived at Gordon College to install my exhibition of paintings, drawings, and prints, titled Redeeming Tensions. Bruce Herman, a Professor at Gordon and director of the gallery, worked with Leo (installer extraordinaire!) and me to hang the show. Here are a few shots of it all going up.

I also spoke for Associate Professor Michael Monroe’s class of 75 or so – fielding all of the students’ questions made for a good time.

More tomorrow after the opening reception talk. If you’re in the area (eastern Massachusetts), stop by! It’ll be at the Barrington Art Center on the Gordon Campus.

So far I’ve felt such a kinship with everyone here. It’s a great place; the beautiful campus has a massive blanket of snow but everyone is pleasant and uplifting to talk to. I’m really looking forward to the reception…